Category Archives: Free Jazz

LEON THOMAS-BLUES AND THE SOULFUL TRUTH.

Leon Thomas-Blues and The Soulful Truth. Label: BGP. Format: LP. Release Date: 26th August 2022. Some labels prove to be the perfect fit for an artist, and this was the case when Leon Thomas signed to Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions.  By the late sixties, Leon Thomas had embraced free jazz fully. He turned his back on …

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LONNIE LISTON SMITH AND THE COSMIC ECHOES-RENAISSANCE.

Lonnie Liston Smith and The Cosmic Echoes-Renaissance. Label: BGP. Format: LP. Release Date: 26th August 2022. Innovative, influential and way ahead of the musical curve, describes the music of Lonnie Liston Smith, and specially the five albums he recorded with The Cosmic Echoes for Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions between 1973 and 1976  This began with …

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NIMBUS SEXTET-FORWARD THINKER.

Nimbus Sextet-Forward Thinker. Label: Acid Jazz Records. Format: CD. It was just over three years ago when Nimbus Sextet signed to Acid Jazz Records in the spring of 2019. A lot has happened since then.  The group recently released their sophomore album Forward Thinker, and are now regarded as one of the leading lights of the …

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LONNIE LISTON SMITH-LIVE!

Lonnie Liston Smith-Live! Label: BGP. Format: CD. Innovative, influential and way ahead of the musical curve describes the music of Lonnie Liston Smith. Especially the music he recorded with The Cosmic Echoes for Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions. A total of five groundbreaking albums were released by the label starting with 1973s Astral Travelling. This continued  right through to …

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LONNIE LISTON SMITH AND THE COSMIC ECHOES-RENAISSANCE.

Lonnie Liston Smith and The Cosmic Echoes-Renaissance. Label: BGP. Format: CD. Innovative, influential and way ahead of the musical curve, describes the music of Lonnie Liston Smith, and specially the five albums he recorded with The Cosmic Echoes for Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions between 1973 and 1976  This began with Astral Travelling in 1973 with  …

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CULT CLASSIC: DOUG CARN-INFANT EYES.

Cult Classic: Doug Carn-Infant Eyes. Although Gene Russell and Dick Schory founded Black Jazz Records in 1969, two years passed before the nascent label released its first album. This was Gene Russell’s sophomore album New Direction which was released in 1971. It was the first of twenty albums by a label that was very different …

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LOST CULT CLASSIC FOUND: MIKE WESTBROOK-LOVE AND UNDERSTANDING: CITADEL/ROOM 315 SWEDEN 74.

Lost Cult Classic: Mike Westbrook-Love and Understanding: Citadel/Room 315 Sweden 74. By 1974, composer and pianist Mike Westbrook was thirty-eight and one of the leading lights of the British jazz scene. He had come a long way since he formed his first band in 1958 when he was an art student studying painting. That was how …

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CULT CLASSIC: STEVE POTTS-MUSIQUE POUR LE FILM D’UN AMI. 

Cult Classic: Steve Potts-Musique Pour Le Film D’Un Ami. Sadly, musical history is littered with artists whose music never received the recognition that it deserved. Often, it’s only much later that their albums start to find the audience that they so richly deserve. That was the case with Alice Clark, Gram Parsons, Laraaji, John Martyn, …

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CULT CLASSIC: THE AWAKENING-HEAR, SENSE AND FEEL.

Cult Classic: The Awakening-Hear, Sense and Feel. Of the twenty albums that Black Jazz Records released between 1971 and 1975, The Awakening’s Hear, Sense and Feel is a much prized rarity amongst collectors. Copies of the album change hands for hundreds of dollars. That is no surprise given the quality of music The Awakening recorded. It …

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IMPULSE RECORDS: MUSIC, MESSAGE AND THE MOMENT.

Impulse Records: Music, Message and The Moment. Label: Impulse. Format: 2CD Set. The roots of Impulse! can be traced to 1955 when the American Broadcasting Company decided the time was right to diversify into the record business. History was made on June ‘14th’ 1955 when  Am-Par Record Corporation was incorporated and Samuel H. Clark became …

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DOUG CARN-INFANT EYES

Doug Carn-Infant Eyes. Label: Real Gone Music. Format: CD. Although Gene Russell and Dick Schory founded Black Jazz Records in 1969, two years passed before the nascent label released its first album. This was Gene Russell’s sophomore album New Direction which was released in 1971. It was the first of twenty albums by a label …

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MICHAEL ROTHER-FROM SPIRIT OF SOUNDS TO THE SOLO YEARS

Michael Rother-From The Sprit Of Sounds To The Solo Years. By the early seventies, the German music scene was thriving, and  was one of the most vibrant in Europe. Some of the most influential and innovative music was being recorded and released by German bands who were part of a new musical movement and were making Kosmische musik. Its roots …

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KJETIL MULELID-PIANO.

Kjetil Mulelid-Piano. Label: Rune Grammofon.  Format: CD. Prodigiously talented describes thirty year old Norwegian composer, bandleader and pianist Kjetil Mulelid who recently released his debut album Piano on the Rune Grammofon label. It’s the latest chapter in the story of one of the rising stars of Norwegian jazz. Kjetil Mulelid was born in Hurdal, a …

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CULT CLASSIC: BOBBY HUTCHERSON-OBLIQUE.

Cult Classic: Bobby Hutcherson-Oblique. On July the ‘21st’ 1967, Bobby Hutcherson journeyed to Van Gelder Studio, in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, to record Oblique which was his sixth solo album for Blue Note Records. It was just the second album he had recorded with a quartet.  The first was Happenings, an album of modal hard bop …

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FAREWELL RODION LADISLAU ROSCA.

Farewell Rodion Ladislau Rosca. Nowadays, the word innovator is used far too often, but the music that Rodion Ladislau Rosca the founder of Romanian experimental rock group Rodion G.A. recorded  was innovative, influential and way ahead of its time. Sadly, living and making music behind the Iron Curtain meant music fans in the West never …

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HEDVIG MOLLESTAD TRIO-DING DONG, YOU’RE DEAD.

Hedvig Mollestad Trio-Ding Dong, You’re Dead. Label: Rune Grammofon. Format: CD. Just nine months ago award-winning Norwegian guitarist, vocalist, bandleader and composer Hedvig Mollestad Thomassen released her critically acclaimed debut solo album Ekhidna.  By then, she was one of the leading lights of Norway’s vibrant music scene. She had founded the Hedvig Mollestad Trio in 2009 …

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MANONGO MUJICA AND TERJE EVENSEN-PARACAS RITUAL

Manongo Mujica and Terje Evensen-Paracas Ritual. Label: Buh Records. Format: 2 x LP. Manongo Mujica has been a leading light of the Peruvian avant-garde music scene since the seventies, and has met a myriad of musicians who were touring Peru. In 2003, this included Norwegian drummer, sound designer, teacher and composer Terje Evensen who was …

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CULT CLASSIC: DAWAN MUHAMMAD-DEEP STREAM.

Cult Classic: Dawan Muhammad-Deep Stream. By 1979, jazz wasn’t as popular as it was during the fifties and early sixties. That was the golden age for jazz, and saw countless classic albums released on labels like Blue Note, Verve and Impulse! These albums sold in large quantities and were profitable for the record companies that …

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CULT CLASSIC: BRAINCHILD-HEALING OF THE LUNATIC OWL.

Cult Classic: Brainchild-Healing Of The Lunatic Owl. Progressive brass rock pioneers Brainchild were formed in Somerset in the late-sixties, and by the 1970 the septet had signed to A&M. This was perfect timing as the brass rock boom began in 1969 and continued until 1972. By then,  Chicago, Blood, Sweat and Tears and The Electric …

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CULT CLASSIC: ANDREW HILL-SMOKE STACK.

Cult Classic: Andrew Hill-Smoke Stack. By the time Chicago-born pianist Andrew Hill released his sophomore album Black Fire on Blue Note Records in 1964, he was already thirty-two, and was making up for lost time. He had only started to play the piano when he was thirteen but made rapid progress. Earl Hines    spotted …

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